Web developers should expect that companies will be asking if their work is section 508 compliant. That is, can people without sight, hearing or other challenges use the website? A blind UC Berkley student has sued Target for committing a civil rights violation because its website is inaccessible to those without sight. Oh, and programmers, I’d expect that the companies wanting to be compliant probably don’t want to pay any extra for it.
Advocates for the blind said the lawsuit is a shot across the bow for retailers, newspapers and others who have Web sites the blind cannot use. They chose Target because of its popularity and because of a large number of complaints by blind patrons.
“What I hope is that Target and other online merchants will realize how important it is to reach 1.3 million people in this nation and the growing baby-boomer population who will also be losing vision,” said plaintiff Bruce Sexton Jr., 24, a blind third-year student at UC Berkeley.
Of note, Section 508 is specific to government agencies and federally funded organizations. I’m pretty sure Target is not federally funded.